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  Reply # 1111284 19-Aug-2014 13:47
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dman: W

Jaxson: The sensor size for me was important, from a low light ability point of view, and from an ability to create a narrow depth of field image, but I fully take on board your comments of the practical issues of nailing focus with such a narrow depth of field and the camera / subject movement.  In practise most modern sensors are pretty good anyway, and without getting into the real picky specifics, they can all do a pretty good job nowadays .


Nailing focus vs modern sensors are two very different things... or maybe those two sentences are just accidentally in the same paragraph together and there is not meant to be any connection between them?


Sensor size was related to light gathering capabilities, and to the depth of field obtainable for a given lens.

Nailing focus was in relation to how practical to work with that narrow depth of in focus field actually is.

New sensors all being pretty good was with regards to light gathering abilities, amount of noise at higher ISO etc.  In practise most modern cameras are all good with regards to their sensors ability.

Software though, yes video has a long way to go with it's implementation on a lot of devices.  Many companies have all the bits, the hardware especially, but they drop the ball on some aspect with regards to video, be that codec, or stabilisation attempts as in the case of the Pentax, or a lack of audio level display etc etc.  

My take on sensor size is related to a photographer want to emulate a full frame shot for portraits on my APS-C equipped bodies, not video specifically at all.  It's a laugh still though that full HD is still only 2MP in size, so the higher the sensor resolution (not physical sensor size) the more the software has to do something to reject most of the information coming at it.


Sorry if the above wasn't particularly clear, I'm racing to pump out these replies when I get a moment. On the whole I agree with much of what you're saying and appreciate the comments.  Good comments from all, thanks!


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  Reply # 1111330 19-Aug-2014 14:48
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Ha! I see while I was writing my lengthy reply, chiefie beat me to the punch and mentioned the A5100!

But seriously, it is looking soooo good: 50Mbps XAVC and 120 fps @ 720P, plus all the goodness of the A6000 (except the EVF) but at a lower price! (and a bunch more other smaller improvements over the A6000 that will takes ages to list, such as a screen that tilts 180 degree up vs the 90 degree screen of the A6000)


Jaxson:
dman: W

Jaxson: The sensor size for me was important, from a low light ability point of view, and from an ability to create a narrow depth of field image, but I fully take on board your comments of the practical issues of nailing focus with such a narrow depth of field and the camera / subject movement.  In practise most modern sensors are pretty good anyway, and without getting into the real picky specifics, they can all do a pretty good job nowadays .


Nailing focus vs modern sensors are two very different things... or maybe those two sentences are just accidentally in the same paragraph together and there is not meant to be any connection between them?


Sensor size was related to light gathering capabilities, and to the depth of field obtainable for a given lens.

Nailing focus was in relation to how practical to work with that narrow depth of in focus field actually is.

New sensors all being pretty good was with regards to light gathering abilities, amount of noise at higher ISO etc.  In practise most modern cameras are all good with regards to their sensors ability.

Software though, yes video has a long way to go with it's implementation on a lot of devices.  Many companies have all the bits, the hardware especially, but they drop the ball on some aspect with regards to video, be that codec, or stabilisation attempts as in the case of the Pentax, or a lack of audio level display etc etc.  

My take on sensor size is related to a photographer want to emulate a full frame shot for portraits on my APS-C equipped bodies, not video specifically at all.  It's a laugh still though that full HD is still only 2MP in size, so the higher the sensor resolution (not physical sensor size) the more the software has to do something to reject most of the information coming at it.

Sorry if the above wasn't particularly clear, I'm racing to pump out these replies when I get a moment. On the whole I agree with much of what you're saying and appreciate the comments.  Good comments from all, thanks!


Sensor size is only one aspect when it comes to low light capabilities. For instance my D5200 is comparable to the Canon 5DmkIII in low light when filming (the 5DmkIII was long seen as the "King of Lowlight", until the A7s was released). Even though they've got very different sensor sizes. I've even been impressed by videos of the RX100 with its 1" sensor showing over Vegas nightlife! I've been content enough with my Panasonic's GH1 even in low light, as together with a fast prime  and a focal reducer it does quite well in low  light (better than a 5DmkII which once came was on the same shoot, somewhat to my surprise).

But yeah, if you regularly need very good low light performance, such as if you regularly film in dimly lit bars for bands or whatever, then getting a D5200/D5300/D7100/D3300/A6000/A5100 makes a lot of sense (if you can't afford/rationalize the A7s) as they all have the "same sensor" in them and perform right at the top of the market for low light in a DSLR/MILC (ignoring the 5DmkIII which is about the same, and the A7s which is heaps better, as they're both waaaay more expensive).

As for depth of field, sensor size is again just one factor. And is quite easy enough with Micro Four Thirds to shoot very shallow depth of field if you wish. Thanks to f/0.95 lenses or speed boosters. Or shooting at a longer focal length. Ever seen Upstream Color? Was shot with a GH2, and I think they really did over do the shallow depth of field look in it in quite a few scenes! To the point of distraction.

http://nofilmschool.com/2013/02/panasonic-gh2-shane-carruth-upstream-color-musgo/

Anyway.... sounds like the A5100 (or maybe A6000) is best for you (worthwhile checking out the Panasonic G6, but I'm pretty sure you'll like the A5100/A6000 more. The GH4 is much much nicer, but also outside your budget).
But I just feel like needing to speak up for Micro Four Thirds too ;-)

Jaxson: A5100 has XAVC S at up to 50Mb/s bitrate though means this is focussed on video quality more than any other NEX camera to date.

Sounds ideal to me smile
 Yup, the A5100 certainly looks like the most exciting mid range (i.e. anything which is not the A7s or GH4) MILC/DSLR release of 2014! (so far...)
However, if you were to quibble.... the A7s is a more video focused camera than the A5100 :-)
(also, strictly speaking neither of them are NEX cameras)




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  Reply # 1111359 19-Aug-2014 15:39
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lol a good read there dman, feel free to rant on, without that sounding like a criticism, which it's not intended to be. wink

Appreciate all the comments and feedback from all.



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  Reply # 1111385 19-Aug-2014 16:27
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Actually I wonder if sony will release a firmware update for the A6000 to update the codec options to match the new A5100 model?
Or will they (probably) keep it separate to force a video focused line of products like the A7s is?

They did this for the older action can range. My HDR-AS15 now does 1080p @ 60fps and 720p @ 120fps for instance.

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  Reply # 1112540 21-Aug-2014 04:26
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Jaxson: lol a good read there dman, feel free to rant on, without that sounding like a criticism, which it's not intended to be. wink


All, I'm a big gearhead nerd :-D I love talking about this stuff :-P

Jaxson: Actually I wonder if sony will release a firmware update for the A6000 to update the codec options to match the new A5100 model?
Or will they (probably) keep it separate to force a video focused line of products like the A7s is?

They did this for the older action can range. My HDR-AS15 now does 1080p @ 60fps and 720p @ 120fps for instance.


Sony has had a spotty record with their E mount cameras, some updating the firmware, most not. I wouldn't hold your breath over the A6000 getting the latest firmware (but of course the A6100 will surely have, and I bet the A6100 is only just around the corner.... LOL! Kidding. But Sony really does pump out their cameras very fast. If only they did this for their lenses too!)




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  Reply # 1112618 21-Aug-2014 09:21
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dman: Sony really does pump out their cameras very fast.


They sure do.  For a range that's only a few years old really, it's littered with NEX and now Axxxx variants already.

The A6000 is still relatively new, but yes I agree, they're likely to pump out a new version in this range rather than update the firmware.  Given the A5100 appears as essentially the same guts as the A6000, I'd be surprised if the A6000 couldn't handle the newer codec already.   Interesting that the A5100 can simultaneously record a 720p stream also, which suggests there is some serious grunt in there processing wise.  That said, in stills it's back to 6 fps, which isn't that fast compared to say the A6000.

Neither have external mic input though, instead requiring a plug on mic in the A6000 case, which can be hacked to allow a 3.5mm input.  External audio recording seems to be the right way to go though if you're serious about this side of things.

The A5100 has bugger all on the outside really, no hot shoe or mic input for instance, and less physical buttons, and no EVF obviously either.  So quite different, but potentially has all the basics for video work, which is essentially what I'm looking for.  I'll still utilise the Pentax DSLR for stills work.

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  Reply # 1112680 21-Aug-2014 10:45
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if you're really serious about an upgrade, go full frame. that's all I can say. might have to wait for better systems, but it's the sensor that gives you the picture. you can upgrade all the side shows, but why?



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  Reply # 1112744 21-Aug-2014 12:19
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joker97: if you're really serious about an upgrade, go full frame. that's all I can say. might have to wait for better systems, but it's the sensor that gives you the picture. you can upgrade all the side shows, but why?


Hi,  I'm not really sure full frame offers the benefits I'm after from a video perspective is all, especially given the costs, but it all depends on what type of content you're capturing most often I guess.
Nowadays the speedbooster adapter approach available on mirrorless devices is a pretty good approximation of full frame for the cost.

I think all sensor sizes have their pros and cons with regards to generating the final video image.
For example Pentax now offer video from their much larger Medium Format sensor, and the results are fairly rubbish.  Whilst the sensor size is important, it's also not everything.
Full HD is still only 2MP resolution, so there are various quality approaches available to discard the additional information the sensor is capturing down to this final resolution.

The Sony A7s seems the likely candidate if you're after full frame for video presently, although 4k enabled bodies are starting to come out.

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  Reply # 1112817 21-Aug-2014 13:33
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oops I forgot video only does 2MP lol

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  Reply # 1112819 21-Aug-2014 13:36
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If you think of the factors outside of technical capability,

Canon support is far better, due to the ecosystem around it (everything is compatible with Canon) , and you will be able to hire/borrow gear due to the fact everyone uses Canon.




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  Reply # 1112852 21-Aug-2014 14:49
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One of the things that bothers me about the Sony A series is the lack of weather sealing. Rain shields are a massive pain and missing opportunities just because it's raining is something I hate.



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  Reply # 1112881 21-Aug-2014 15:06
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macuser: If you think of the factors outside of technical capability,

Canon support is far better, due to the ecosystem around it (everything is compatible with Canon) , and you will be able to hire/borrow gear due to the fact everyone uses Canon.



I think that's what Canon is banking on personally ~ that everyone will keep on buying their products because they have sold so many products.  Sheep comes to mind.  wink

I hear you though.  I'm a member of several NZ Photography sales groups on the likes of Facebook and everything is Canon.
There's definitely something in that.



alasta: One of the things that bothers me about the Sony A series is the lack of weather sealing. Rain shields are a massive pain and missing opportunities just because it's raining is something I hate.


Agreed also.   This is one area that Pentax does very well.  My K-30 and standard kit lens are more than capable right out of the box, for what is just one step up from their absolute entry level model.





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  Reply # 1112899 21-Aug-2014 15:25
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Jaxson:
macuser: If you think of the factors outside of technical capability,

Canon support is far better, due to the ecosystem around it (everything is compatible with Canon) , and you will be able to hire/borrow gear due to the fact everyone uses Canon.



I think that's what Canon is banking on personally ~ that everyone will keep on buying their products because they have sold so many products.  Sheep comes to mind.  wink

I hear you though.  I'm a member of several NZ Photography sales groups on the likes of Facebook and everything is Canon.
There's definitely something in that.




I would say if you're basing your purchase decision on inconviencing yourself, then I think you're going to be screwed from the get go.  I am a processional photographer, our studio runs on Canon gear (just like everyone elses studio).  I own a NEX-7, it's a cool piece of technology, and works great...but I'm not about to shoot a campaign on it.  

 

The only solution where a Sony camera would make sense is a A7s with a Metabones adapter to Canon glass.

 

 

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  Reply # 1113849 22-Aug-2014 22:58
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Jaxson:
dman: Sony really does pump out their cameras very fast.


They sure do.  For a range that's only a few years old really, it's littered with NEX and now Axxxx variants already.

The A6000 is still relatively new, but yes I agree, they're likely to pump out a new version in this range rather than update the firmware.  Given the A5100 appears as essentially the same guts as the A6000, I'd be surprised if the A6000 couldn't handle the newer codec already.   Interesting that the A5100 can simultaneously record a 720p stream also, which suggests there is some serious grunt in there processing wise.  That said, in stills it's back to 6 fps, which isn't that fast compared to say the A6000.

Neither have external mic input though, instead requiring a plug on mic in the A6000 case, which can be hacked to allow a 3.5mm input.  External audio recording seems to be the right way to go though if you're serious about this side of things.

The A5100 has bugger all on the outside really, no hot shoe or mic input for instance, and less physical buttons, and no EVF obviously either.  So quite different, but potentially has all the basics for video work, which is essentially what I'm looking for.  I'll still utilise the Pentax DSLR for stills work.



I agree, the big thing I wish the A5100 had is a hotshoe and an mic input (not essential though, as usually you'll go dual sound. So doesn't matter. But on occasion when you are doing R&G and quick and dirty, it is nice to have). But can even the lack of hotshoe can be worked around, by using an extension added to tripod mount you can grab space to mount stuff there as if it was a hotshoe (well.. coldshoe!).

Jaxson:
joker97: if you're really serious about an upgrade, go full frame. that's all I can say. might have to wait for better systems, but it's the sensor that gives you the picture. you can upgrade all the side shows, but why?


Hi,  I'm not really sure full frame offers the benefits I'm after from a video perspective is all, especially given the costs, but it all depends on what type of content you're capturing most often I guess.
Nowadays the speedbooster adapter approach available on mirrorless devices is a pretty good approximation of full frame for the cost.

I think all sensor sizes have their pros and cons with regards to generating the final video image.
For example Pentax now offer video from their much larger Medium Format sensor, and the results are fairly rubbish.  Whilst the sensor size is important, it's also not everything.
Full HD is still only 2MP resolution, so there are various quality approaches available to discard the additional information the sensor is capturing down to this final resolution.

The Sony A7s seems the likely candidate if you're after full frame for video presently, although 4k enabled bodies are starting to come out.


I totally agree, there is absolutely nothing about full frame which is attractive for video with the *one* exception of the Sony A7s, unless you can also heavily use them for photography too and you have a lot of cash to burn (then the D800/D810 and 5DmkIII are worthwhile considering. But the much cheaper Nikon D5300 can beat both of them when it comes to video performance. And I won't even mention the GH4 or A7s....)

alasta: One of the things that bothers me about the Sony A series is the lack of weather sealing. Rain shields are a massive pain and missing opportunities just because it's raining is something I hate.


Go Pentax then! :-P Even their older lower end bodies are tanks.

Check out this army guy giving them a run through:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eo61t5fH6Qw

macuser: If you think of the factors outside of technical capability,

Canon support is far better, due to the ecosystem around it (everything is compatible with Canon) , and you will be able to hire/borrow gear due to the fact everyone uses Canon.

 

Oh good, don't go with Canon! Their attitude towards APS-C buyers and video users in general who buy their DSLRs has been horrible. (seriously, who wants to buy their latest high end APS-C DSLR yet only get a rubbishy as ancient T2i/550D sensor in it!) Plus their lenses are THE WORST, out of *all* the interchangeable systems on the market, to try and adapt to other mounts.


Jaxson:
I think that's what Canon is banking on personally ~ that everyone will keep on buying their products because they have sold so many products.  Sheep comes to mind.  wink

I hear you though.  I'm a member of several NZ Photography sales groups on the likes of Facebook and everything is Canon.
There's definitely something in that.


Which ones is that? I'm only in one NZ photography classifieds on Facebook, and while not *everything* is Canon. It is the majority :-/ I'm not too bothered, I see more than enough Nikon to buy some now and then ;-) Though I find NZ prices rather inflated, so I get everything from eBay/Amazon instead for much less, thus the state of the NZ second hand market hardly matters much to me.

Jaxson:
Agreed also.   This is one area that Pentax does very well.  My K-30 and standard kit lens are more than capable right out of the box, for what is just one step up from their absolute entry level model.

 

 

 

Well... snap! I just saw that post *after* I wrote my earlier reply in this comment :-P




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  Reply # 1119207 31-Aug-2014 22:34
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joker97: if you're really serious about an upgrade, go full frame. that's all I can say. might have to wait for better systems, but it's the sensor that gives you the picture. you can upgrade all the side shows, but why?


Nah, "full frame" is marketing spin nonsense from Canikon. Popularising a phrase to try and make people to throw more money at their productions. Which they're done quite successfully.

My medium format Pentax 645 laughs at your puny "full frame" sensor! (wish people would call it 135 format instead) wink

When it comes to filming, "full frame" is actually Super 35mm (which is almost the same as APS-C) as that is the most common sensor size used by Hollywood (although... for tiny indie productions, arguably S16 could often make more sense).






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